Not having played for decades, I am getting back into chess, with all the great programs. I have Shredder 13 and Fritz 17. Both can output very impressive analysis. But for an effective newbie, where can one find out how to understand and interpret this detailed information? The manuals are totally missing any useful help. Apologies for such a newbie question, but the point is I would like to understand how I can improve my game by through the engine generated analyses. All I understand presently is the figure that represents the advantage estimate. There are tens of thousands of videos on chess. So far I have not found one dedicated to this topic.

  • I have the same question. I understand the scores as centipawns but not (Fritz 17 here) when I "display win probablities" and get something like 50%+8% = 85%-8% what do those numbers mean.
    – Dennis
    Feb 17, 2021 at 21:18

1 Answer 1


I'm not sure what you're asking.

Chess analysis programs go through all possible moves for some number of (half-)moves starting from a given board position. They evaluate the static board position at the 'depth' to which they're set to analyze, and return a score for the position. This is not how any human plays the game, of course.

When the engine recommends a move, it is indicating that that move got the highest score among other moves possible from that position. Its static board evaluator might know about control of the center, or control of more space, or having two bishops, but it knows about them in terms of evaluating a single board position and scoring it, not in terms of deciding that that principle applies in a given situation and making moves on that basis. It's a subtle difference, I guess, but very real to the programmers.

Other than that, you get negative scores for Black advantage, positive for White, the numbers increase for more advantage.

In the end, about all you can do with the output of chess analysis is see the moves they regard as 'best' (and maybe 2nd and 3rd best) from any position and try to figure out how you would have known to make those moves and not some other moves. You can try other moves and figure out what would have happened, why they are worse.

If you have another question, can you make it more specific?

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